7.6-magnitude earthquake hits Pakistan-India border

Oct. 9, 2005, midnight | By Merlyn Deng | 18 years, 8 months ago

Over 20,000 are believed to be dead

This is not original reporting. All Information has been compiled from an Associated Press article "Rescuers Try to Reach Asia Quake Survivors" by The Associated Press. Silver Chips Online posts these stories to provide students with a forum for discussion.

More than 20,000 are believed to be dead after a 7.6-magnitude earthquake occurred on the Pakistan-India boarder yesterday, Oct. 8. The earthquake caused massive devastation in sections of Pakistan, India and Afghanistan, according to the Associated Press.

The epicenter of the earthquake was 60 miles northeast of Islamabad, in the mountains of Pakistani Kashmir, where the Pakistan-India border is located, according to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The 7.6-magnitude earthquake occurred at 8:50 a.m. local time and spread out approximately 100 km from the epicenter. Five aftershocks occurred in Pakistan, and the strongest aftershock, 6.3-magnitude, was located 70 miles north of Islamabad.

The earthquake's effects reached the capitals of Pakistan, India and Afghanistan, causing people to scramble out of their homes and offices as buildings and walls collapsed. According to the United Nations, more than 2.5 million residents in the affected regions are in need of shelter.

Pakistani Chief Army Spokesman Maj. Gen. Shaukat Sultan said that the earthquake caused massive damage in the Pakistani-controlled Kashmir region, including its capital, Muzaffarabad. India senior state official B.B. Vyas said that over 20,000 people have been injured and more than 2,700 homes have sustained damage or have been totally destroyed across the Jammu-Kashmir region.

Currently, soldiers and local volunteers are working to rescue people from under destroyed homes and buildings in the Jammu-Kashmir region. In addition, telephone lines have fallen and bridges are on the verge of collapsing. Traffic, however, has not been stopped, according to the Associated Press.

Other places that suffered considerable damage include the districts of Batagram, Balakot, Mansehra, Abbottabad and Patan, in northwestern Pakistan, according to Sultan.

Two main highways have been shut down in India-controlled Kashmir because of landslides caused by the earthquake.

Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Musharraf and Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz have ordered for military aid in the affected areas and urged Pakistani residents to remain calm, according to the Associated Press.

According to U.S. military spokesman Lt. Col. Jerry O'Hara, the earthquake's effects also reached Bagram, where the main American base of Afghanistan is located, but there have not been any reports of damage to bases in the country.

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Merlyn Deng. Merlyn (Mer - LEEN) has an unhealthy fixation on Silver Chips Online, the Silver Chips Manifesto, red pens and serial commas. When not editing stories and racking her brain for SCO and its readers, she may be found haunting Blair's hallways or downtown Silver Spring. … More »

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